It's always funny until you're the one being made fun of
March 11, 2008 8:20 PM Subscribe
"We need to make a comic so I can eat lunch."
posted by sdodd (23 comments total)
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You're in your office sitting at your desk. There's a hot mic in the room. It's 45 minutes 'till lunch, your tummy's grumbling and you still have to write a comic. Fortunately your best friend -- who is also the co-founder of your decade-old business empire -- is sitting at his desk a few feet away. You are "Gabe" or "Tycho" of Penny Arcade, and the next 45 minutes will be captured on tape and published for all the world to hear as a podcast. But only if it's good. "Downloadable Content, The Penny Arcade Podcast
" is practically a documentary on collaboratively authoring webcomics. The most recent episode is a particularly good example of that.
The March 7th episode, "Our Crucial Pamphlet
" [MP3], typifies the process.
It starts with an informal brainstorming session to discover topics for the day's comic (and associated essay/blog post). The brainstorming is frequently interrupted by digressions. A short list of choices is produced. A topic is chosen and the layout, dialog, and action is discussed. The final comic
is written out (dialog and description) panel by panel. One participant is the writer and one the artist, but you won't be able to tell who is who; no strong division of labor is evident in the give and take. Finally, the written description is read aloud, declared good and the recording ends. It's lunchtime.
The March 3rd episode, entitled "PON PON PATA PON
" [MP3], diverges from the pattern. But only in that the final comic
is a Hitchcock-influenced horror scene with no dialog. We hear Tycho and Gabe remove lines of dialog one by one until only the action remains.
The "pennyarcade" tag is alive and well
here at MetaFilter, but the podcast has not yet been discussed. This is only my second post to the Blue, so criticism is welcome.